Bangalore International Centre had arranged a talk on “The influx of Syrian Refugees in Germany and other European Countries” Mr. Joern Rohde, Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany, Bengaluru on Friday, 8th January, 2016 at 6.30 PM. Mr. Nitin Pai, Co-Founder and Director, Takshashila Institution chaired and moderated the discussion.
Mr. Rohde highlighted that Germany had generally taken a liberal approach towards immigrants during the post-war period, particularly due to their needs for skilled and semi-skilled labour. Most of such labour-needs were usually met through a steady flow of migrants from Turkey. They were termed as “guest workers”, freely permitted to reside in Germany and seamlessly absorbed in the social and cultural milieu of Germany. As a result, Germany never saw the need of a conscious immigration policy, like certain other countries like Australia, Canada or USA.
Mr. Rohde conceded however that the recent influx of Syrian refugees in such large numbers at a time have created certain situations which might call for evolution of certain basic policy guidelines to regulate the inflow of immigrants in Germany. He recounted the experiences in other European countries to emphasise that European Commission is basically an organization in which the nation states have complete and absolute sovereignty in all the areas, excepting those where sovereign powers have been given to EC.